5 Must-Watch Movies in Finance

  • Updated on: 25 Apr 2023
  • Published on: 10 Jun 2021
5 Must-Watch Movies in Finance

Movies aren’t just about entertainment, whereas books are generally meant for knowledge. What if they interchange their roles? What if movies help you gain knowledge, typically financial knowledge? 

Below are five finance movies that you must watch if you want to learn more about finance. They’ll take you to the world of money and the market and probably impart knowledge and insight.

The fantastic motion picture is based on The Big Short’s nonfiction book: Inside the Doomsday Machine by Michael Lewis. It follows a few traders as they become aware of the housing bubble that triggered 2007-2008.

This finance movie breaks down sophisticated financial instruments by, for example, having Selena Gomez explain what synthetic CDOs are at a poker table or having Margot Robbie explain mortgage-backed bonds in a tub with champagne.

Margin Call is a Wall Street finance thriller following a high-powered brokerage firm staff in the 24 hours leading up to the stock market collapse in 2008. Written and directed by J.C. Chandor, the movie shows the men (and one woman) from a human perspective. Unlike The Company Men, their humanity can’t mask the fact that they essentially sold their souls long ago to achieve their successes.

A margin call is usually not good news for an investor in finance. If you borrow money from a broker to invest, they will often require you to comply with a certain maintenance margin or the maximum percentage of the equity in the investment. It’s easy at the beginning: If the maintenance margin is 30 percent and you want to make a $150,000 investment, you’ll have to pay $50,000 of your own money. 

If the value of the investment falls, you’ll have to pay money to meet the maintenance margin again. For example, if the investment value falls to $100,000 but you owe your broker $50,000, you’ll have to pay him or her $20,000 to make up the difference. Imagine this scenario on a massive level, and you’ll be close to the plot of Margin Call. If a firm is overleveraged, a significant drop in the market could cripple not just one investor but an entire company – and that’s what’s about to happen to the company featured in Margin Call.

One of the best finance movie is the Oliver Stone classic, Wall Street. The movie was released in 1987 and popularized the phrase “greed is good.” It holds the power to attract traders, brokers, analysts, and bankers even till now. It serves to warn people about the dangers of insider trading. 

The story is of a corporate tycoon with few morals to speak of, named Gordon Gekko, who takes a young stockbroker under his wing – but only because Fox agreed to help him with insider trading. The movie was made in tribute to Oliver Stone’s (the producer’s) father, a stockbroker during the Great Depression. By the end of the movie, greed threatens to impact the people the character cares about the most. Any more information might spoil the fun of the financial movie, which you wouldn’t likely miss. 

Directed by Gaurav K. Chawla, Baazaar is a Hindi finance movie released on 26 October 2018. It mainly revolves around money, power, and the stock market. A small-town lad heads to Mumbai. To work with his role model, a corporate czar, he tries various things. Beginning from smuggling diamonds on crowded Surat to Mumbai express trains, the two worlds collide. The contrast between a 100-meter sprint and a marathon race is discussed, numbers are crunched, shady deals are struck, stocks are bought and dumped, and fortunes are made and marred.

A young, ambitious broker, that is, Saif Ali Khan, partakes in insider trading in both movies and then snitches on the giant market raiders to the authorities. The movie, while being entertaining, is quite informative as well. It is about a host of rich and powerful people, including stockbrokers, businessmen, and industrialists. It uses plenty of stock market jargon and uses them effortlessly so that a typical viewer can also understand what’s happening. 

The Big Bull is based on a real story following the life and times of Hemant Shah. This man was a small-time stockbroker who manipulated the loopholes in the country’s archaic banking system to create a massive bull run on the stock exchange. But when the Indian economy was taking its giant leap towards liberalization, it was only a matter of time before Hemant Shah’s dream run ended in a nightmare. It’s a true rags-to-riches story that has captured the collective conscience of the world. Abhishek Bachchan plays the main character. The film’s dialogues too are pretty ineffective, like, ‘hamare paas bhagwaan se bhi zyada paise hain.’ Most of the dialogues don’t propel the characters to make them look powerful even when the scenes demand so. 

The movie depicts a dramatic story of one of India’s most prominent financial scams. It was orchestrated by a man who seemed more like a common man than a con man. DIve into the suspense and share your reviews about Junior B.

Watch These Finance Movies

These were some of the finance movies you might enjoy watching! In case we missed any superb financial movies, please comment below. Don’t forget to mention which financial movie is your favorite!

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